The Presidential Service Badge

White House Service Badge and Presidential Service Badge, reverse #194
White House Service Badge, reverse
White House Service Badge and Presidential Service Badge lapel pins
White House Service Badge certificate
White House Service Badge bullion patch, not authorized
The presidential service badge
The presidential and vice presidential service badges
The White House Service Badge

About 1958, the White House wanted to recognize all the military personnel attached to the White House as aide-de-camps and came up with a permanent medal each service member can attach to their uniform. It would be a permanent award once the service member served no less than one year at the White House. It was officially called the White House Service Badge.

The White House Service Badge was awarded to all military personnel whether they worked for the president or vice president. It was round with a white background with a sterling silver presidential eagle overlay. This decoration or award was maintained through the end of the Eisenhower Administration and through the John F. Kennedy Administration. They are usually number stamped on the reverse.

In 1964, Lyndon Johnson retired the White House Service Badge and replaced it with a separate Presidential Service Badge (PSB) and the Vice Presidential Service Badge (VPSB). The PSB was the presidential coat-of-arms, that is blue field with a gold presidential eagle overlay surrounded by 50 stars. These are usually number stamped on the reverse. The VPSB was white with gold presidential eagle overlay and not usually number. These awards are still in service today.

Up until several years ago, these items were particularly rare and hardly ever seen for sale. With the advent of online auctions, more and more are showing up particularly as sets. Still, the lower the numbered PSB and any numbered VPSB are more collectable selling for about $1200 a pair with number less than 9000. Higher numbers are still valuable at about $800-900 a pair. I recently sold a White House Service Badge for $1500 and a very early PBS in the 7500 number range for $1300, yet the White House Service Badge continues to be extremely rare.

Note: the image of the four presidential service badges is from the Presidential Service Badge Association, but the dates for the Vice Presidential Service Badge are incorrect. The seal of the Vice President was updated by Vice President Rockefeller in 1975, not 1971.

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  1. Presidentialserver says:

    Can you tell me what my Presidential Service Badge numbered 194 is worth? It was issued on September 1, 1964, the first day the Presidential Order went into effect retiring the White House Service Badge and replacing it with the Presidential Service Badge. I have the original certificate with the date of issue, person who was issued the badge, and the badge number on the certificate. Overall, considering the age of the badge it is in excellent condition.

  2. jerry hicks says:

    where can i buy a white house service badge lapel pin, 1960-1964 type.

  3. jerry hicks says:

    I am iterested in purchasing a white house service badge and lapel pin 1960-1964 type.
    Please contact me if you know of or have one or both of these for sale.

  4. Tom Carrier says:

    Jerry, while perusing some old blogs of mine I came across your question only now. The last time I had a pre-1964 PSB was a couple of years ago. I sold it for $1400, but that was without the lapel pin. This PSB has been extremely difficult to find, but I’ll keep on eye out for one and let you know.

    All the best. Tom

  5. Tom Carrier says:

    To Presidentialserver: PSB’s that early are scarce, but with Ebay, are getting less so as time goes on. Still, I sold a three-numbered one about 2 years ago for about $1300. Recently, I found a PSB certificate, nicely framed, with the number 136. Certificates were once more than scarce, they were just plain hard to find. Now, the current ones are selling on Ebay for about $20 to $30 each. The early three-numbered ones could be double that. Be sure to keep the badge and certificate together. It makes for an impressive collection.

    Tom Carrier

  6. Michael Rolf says:

    Hallo
    I have in my collection the WHSB not numbered, the new PSB is numbered 13XXX, the new VPSB (with stars) is not numbered. I also have a VPSB with stars but a different eagle (it is shown in the MARINE CORPS ORDER P1020.34D 27 Jul 1983 on page 6-30), the ID-badge in not numbered but on the back it is stamped “ANTAYA”.

    I have a ID-badge like the WHSB but the background is blue (without stars), also I have a picture of a WHSB with blue background and stars, this badge I´ve had many years ago but trade it.

    My question:
    Could it be possible, that the WHSB changed to the PSB if they first changed just the color of the background from white to blue and later they added the stars, and sometime later they changed the size of the badges to a smaler size like the current version?

    If you wan´t, I can send you all the pictures of the ID-badges.

    I saw the pictures of the handembroidered WHSB and the certificate. Is it possible to get scans (300dpi) of these?

    Thanks
    Michael Rolf

  7. Bill Cuff says:

    As someone intimately involved with initial issuance of both the WHSB and PSB (recipient of both and low two-digit holder of the latter), please allow me to add to, and correct several inaccuracies in, your description of those items. First, the WHSB was not a permanent award and did not require a year’s service prior to issue. They were not numbered. It was issued to and worn by uniformed military personnel only while serving in the White House Office and designated support facilities, i.e., Camp David, Naval Administrative Unit, White House Garage, White House Army Signal Agency (now WHCA), Air Force One, HMX-1 and the US Army Executive Flight Detachment. It was NOT authorized for the Vice President’s staff. Upon detachment from WH service, the WHSB had to be turned back in, although the accompanying certificate was retained as a permanent keepsake. When the Presidential Service Badge was established, holders of the WHSB were allowed to keep the latter as a memento, but further wear upon uniforms was not authorized. Although staff work on the Executive Order establishing the PSB began during the Kennedy Adminstration, it was not finalized until after Lyndon Johnson became President. Numbered PSBs and certificates were issued beginning in 1964. Incidentally, PSB #1 was awarded posthumously to President Kennedy and is on display at the Kennedy Library. Badges #2, 3 and 4 were issued to Kennedy’s military aides: General Chester V. Clifton, USA, Gneral Godfrey T. McHugh, USAF, and Captain Tazewell T. Shepard, USN. That Executive Order established the PSB as a permanent award and mandated the one-year service requirement.

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Bill

      You provided some very, very important information on the WHSB. It wasn’t my intention to mislead anyone regarding these important awards, but very little is actually known about their early history and the above information is intended to reflect what is known.

      With your comments, several issues were laid to rest such as: whether they were numbered, whether they were a permanent award, who they were issued to, and the basic requirements for an award.

      My thanks for helping set the early record straight.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  8. Robert Bleakley says:

    rbleakl1@tampabay.rr.com

    I served JFK in 1962, WHCA. I was awarded both badges and certificates. I lost the white eisenhower pin and was wondering where I might find another. Bob Bleakley, Tarpon Springs, Fl

  9. Nancy Moon says:

    Hi,
    I have a question about the numbers on the back, mine has the name Balfour and the number 1-8 or 1-B. It is the 1960-64 Badge.

    Any idea of the value? It was my Fathers.
    Thanks,
    Nancy

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Ms. Moon, you have the standard manufacture stamp and identification number on the reverse of the original White House Service Badge issued in 1960 until it was retired by President Lyndon Johnson in 1964. The Presidential and Vice Presidential Service Badges took its place at that time.

      The value of the White House Service Badge can range from $950 to $1500, depending on the auction and how often it appears. Still, of all the service badges associated with White House service, it is still the rarest and most valuable.

      There should also be a certificate associated with the badge in your father’s name. Together, it would make a particularly impressive display of an important family service to the United States.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  10. Nancy Moon says:

    Mr. Carrier,
    Thank you for your reply. My Father died in 1984, my Mother in 1980. I have no children, siblings, cousins etc.
    Absolutely no relatives, so no person to leave this special item to, my husband is not interested.

    I have made 2 moves over the last 38 years and through some losses, I am sure no certificate exists anymore, although I will look through boxes and old papers to be sure.

    I am sure I will most likely offer it for sale.
    Thank you again for all the information.
    Nancy Moon

  11. Daniel Hoover says:

    I thought I would provide you some information on the Vice Presidential Service Certificate and Badge. I worked for the Vice President during Vice President Rockerfeller’s term, and received the Vice Presidential Service Certificate and Badge. The Eagle on the Badge was as the Vice Presidential Seal used to be with the Eagles wings in the down extended position. They were numbered on the Reverse side also. I have the Certificate and Badge (Number 34) which I received while I was there. If there were an attachment feature here I would have attached a copy.

  12. Hank Roth says:

    I have a White House Service Certificate. I served President Dwight Eisenhower in the White House, at Camp David and at Camp Crystal from 59-60. I never received the White House medal. I do have a lapel pin which I attached to my JWV Commander’s hat. I also worked the WAR room in the 60s for the Chiefs of Staff after I returned from a tour at COMZREAR in Orleans, France. Those were great times. I also belonged to the 1600 Communications Association for a few years and of course I’ve been to the garage/shop many times. Most of those who served with me are now deceased. I’m 72. If anyone was there when I was, they can contact me at epsilon@inyourface.info ..
    Hank Roth

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Hank:

      I’m supposed to get notice of any questions posted on any of my 300 separate blog entries, but somehow I missed yours and I apologize.

      As you know the White House Service Badge was issued from Eisenhower to Lyndon Johnson until it was discontinued in 1964 in favor of separate presidential and vice presidential service badges.

      You only received a certificate, since the service badge had to be turned in after your tour of duty was completed. Still, your certificate is considered quite scarce. For a collector of service badges (and there aren’t that many) would easily pay $75 to $100 for yours in good shape.

      All the best.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  13. Jesse K. says:

    I was wondering what the following items might be worth. I would appreciate any input from Tom or any others that might have an idea as to value. Might be interested in parting with parts or all items if price is right.

    I have a PSB and certificate that was issued February 4, 1975. The badge number is 4498. I received this as a member of The U.S. Army Executive Flight Detachment (Army One). I also have 3 unopened packs of White House Mess cigarettes in their original cellophane package. They have the presidential seal and they have the surgeon general warning as I received them around 74’/75′. I also have a candy dish with the presidential seal and Welcome Aboard Army One along w/Gerald Ford’s signature. Also have 2 cigarette lighters engraved w/pres. seal and an engraved depiction of a pres. helicopter. Also have 2 presidential patches. One is a pres. seal and the other is the seal with The U.S. Army Executive Detachment attached around the seal. These seals were worn on flight jackets and the “Eisenhower” jackets that were standard issue for detachment members worn with the Class A uniform in lieu of the regular Class A Army coat.

    Thanks,

    Jesse Kauffman
    USA Ret. / E8

    jrealty2003@yahoo.com

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Jesse:

      We had a chance to expand on your inquiry through email as to whether you were trying to sell the items or just get an evaluation. I understand that you need an evaluation in order to sell, if the right price came along. There is some good news and bad news on that front.

      As I mentioned above, the PSB was issued beginning in 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson and those early ones are considered quite rare. Yours was issued a decade or so later when more were produced and issued. Your lower number does give you more of a collectible value than a more recent issue, but what makes yours a good collectible is the certificate. With the certificate and the appropriately numbered PSB, the value for both is $350 to $450 if they are kept together.

      Any Army One items are relatively scarcer than Marine One items. Your Ford commemorative candy dish along with the lighters each have a value of about $150 to $200 as long as all of the original boxes are still intact.

      The cigarettes were never much of a collectible White House item. Never quite knew why, but they are hard to sell to collectors no matter the era. They bring about $10 at the most to any collector.

      The patches are of an earlier era, particularly the ‘Class A’ patch of the Executive Detachment Flight – Army One and so are coveted by collectors, if they are aware of their significance (and few are). The Army One patch wasn’t an ‘official’ patch, as I understand it, but one created by the Detachment for public use on Class A uniforms. The value is of the $50 to $75 range. The presidential patch is about $20 to $35 range.

      So, altogether, your collection may have a value of between $900 and about $1200. You have a better chance of getting about middle range for the collection in a private sale and probably less at an auction sale. You can expect a dealer to offer about half of the range of value for resale.

      The overall bad news for your collection is that there are relatively few who are true collectors and they are mostly within the military community. The online auction sites routinely have unearthed many of these awards and so their value has decreased over the past several years. The one thing going for your unique collection is its earlier association with Army One.

      I hope this helps.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  14. Jim says:

    Hello

    I think I may have a line on a old White House Service Badge, I dont want to pay to much and dont want to mistake it for a VPSB.

    Was wondering if I could email you a picture?

    Thanks

  15. Todd says:

    I lost psb while moving. Using my number is there away I can replace it?

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Todd:

      Check with the White House Military Office for your question. They will have the regulations that pertain to lost or missing PSB’s. Let me know what they tell you.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  16. Bob Cook says:

    There is a mistake in the description of the WHSB. Not all military personnel assigned to the White House were given the badge. The key may be in the statement “aides de camp”. I was part of the presidential detail from 1958 to December 1960, received the Presidential Service Certificate, but none of the non-commissioned officers I knew received the badge.

    • Tom Carrier says:

      Bob:

      Executive Order 10879 created the White House Service Badge on June 1, 1960 too late to be issued for your tour of service at the White House.

      The WHSB remained in force for only four years until Lyndon Johnson created both the Presidential and Vice Presidential Service Badges where both officers and enlisted were able to wear the badge after one year of service at the White House.

      Would love to see an image of your presidential service certificate, though. That would be new information.

      Thanks.

      Tom Carrier
      Worthologist

  17. James says:

    I was stationed at Camp David 1978 – 1983. PSB#5983. I served Presidents Carter and Regan.I was there for the mid-east summit 1978 and the Mex/American summit (forget the year). I would not sell my PSB no matter what the offer.

    • A-10 says:

      James,

      I was also stationed at Camp David with Marine Security Co, from Sep 1975 to Dec 1976. President Ford. PSB #5179. I echo your thoughts – I would never sell my PSB. Got to meet President Ford on Thanksgiving 1976 after he lost the election to President Carter. He came by the mess hall to thank the Marines for their service. I was standing in the Quarterdeck when he came in. Got to shake hands with him and Mrs Ford. I ETSed out of the Marines in Dec 1976. To my surprise, I received a package at my in-law’s home from the White House. Inside was a picture of me shaking hands with the President. I don’t even remember a photographer being there. In 2006, in mailed the photo to President Ford at his home in Palm Springs asking if he would autograph it for me. He graciously did.

      I also received two large Christmas cards from the Fords, one in 1975 depicting a barnyard scene and one in 1976 depicting Independence Hall. I would never sell them either.

      Have you looked at the current Camp David on Bing or Google? The tore down the old barracks and built new ones where the parking lot used to be. Also looks like Elm is gone.

      A-10